Ian shot, directed, and wrote AKQA's holiday promotion for 2013, which was awarded a Silver Lion at the Cannes Festival of Creativity in the Mobile category as well as a Silver Pencil at the One Show in the Interactive Mobile Applications/Self Promotion category.

Read the case study at AKQA.com.

These ideas were conceived while working at AKQA.
Ian wrote this commercial for Avera Hospital.

Avera Hospital - Blackout from Ian J Young on Vimeo.

Most of the time you don't need a lot of copy to tell a great story. Fun fact: this may be the only commercial in the history of healthcare where the patient doesn't make it.

These ideas were conceived while working at BVK.

Ian wrote and shot parts of this commercial for Rosetta Stone.

Rosetta Stone - Brand Commercial from Pappas Group on Vimeo.

Ian filmed the portraits of the voiceover artists.

These ideas were conceived while working at Pappas Group.
Ian pitched this miniseries of branded content and wrote the supporting campaign for .CO.

These ideas were conceived while working at Pappas Group.
Ian thought up the movie poster and wrote the campaign for Changing The Conversation.

This film's mission was to reposition gun control laws as a public health debate. Its success hinged on chatter, so Ian imagined up the artwork, wrote the synopsis and got as much traction as he could with just enough budget for stamps.

The postcards doubled as a means for moviegoers to petition their legislators. Activists were on site to provide postage and the addresses of local legislators.

These ideas were conceived while working at BVK.
Ian wrote this website for Olympus lenses.

Ian created the brand-tonality guidelines and oversaw copy for Verizon's flagship store.

Highlights include:
*285 screens throughout with bespoke content that evolves given time of day, interaction, and dwell time.
*27-ft interactive wall for people to play with three levels of UX-driven content.
*First-of-its-kind use of Leap Motion in a retail environment.

These ideas were conceived while working at AKQA.
Ian wrote these short stories for Stacy Adams.

The Distinguished Gentleman
char-ac-ter : attributes or features which make up or distinguish an individual

A successful businessman needed an assistant. The better part of his career had included long nights, which meant a great deal of time spent away from his family. As he approached an age when he valued relationships more than enterprise, he set out to hire a qualified assistant to alleviate his workload. Finally, he arrived at three candidates. He instructed his secretary to await their arrival while holding a box filled to the brim with documents. She was to observe each candidate as he approached the main entrance. Each interview went as well as the next. After the interviews concluded he asked for the secretary’s observations. “The first man walked through the doors and paid no attention to my rapidly approaching footsteps,” she said. “And the second?” the businessman inquired. “He held the door and asked which floor to find you,” she reported. “And the final candidate?” “The third gentleman saw me approaching and relieved my loaded arms by carrying the box inside.” “Thank you. That is what I needed to know,” the businessman concluded. But she didn’t understand and inquired, “But sir, why did you insist I follow them?” “Character,” he said profoundly.

The Distinguished Gentleman
her-i-tage : valued objects and qualities acquired from a predecessor

A young man was given the same pocket watch his father had received from his father, and so on for too many generations to recall. The heirloom was decorated with precious metals and priceless jewels, but had stopped ticking somewhere up their family tree. It was said that the watch was one-of-a-kind and could only be repaired by its creator, whom stopped ticking as well. So the young man set out to hire an experienced watchmaker who could repair his family’s keepsake. And that is exactly what he did. Alas, weeks went by and the world’s most distinguished watchmaker had yet to find his way beneath the bejeweled exterior. This went on for months. Soon, the watchmaker became obsessed. He studied the watch day and night. Finally, the watchmaker offered to purchase the pocket watch for a sum that rivaled the assets of many small countries. Without a tick of a single clock, the young man respectfully declined the offer, returned the watch to its rightful pocket, and began his long journey back home. Despite the promise of great wealth, the young man knew the true value wasn’t inside the pocket watch, but rather inside himself, his father, his father’s father, and so on for too many generations to recall.

These ideas were conceived while working at BVK.
Ian ideated and wrote this campaign for The Washington Post.

Body copy reads: [When it comes to getting every detail around a story, look no further. Our iPad app takes you closer to the news by combining Post articles with videos, photos and live expert discussions, so you get every angle of every story.]

A sports execution:

[Same copy]

A news executions:

[Same copy]

Even some banner ads:

And an aggregate executions:

Body copy reads: [The Washington Post is now on the iPad. It’s time for the news to work with technology, not just on it, to enhance the relevance and clarify the context of today’s biggest stories. The new Washington Post iPad application has a dedicated curator who selects the most relevant headlines from the Post and builds upon each article with photos, videos and real-time conversations from pundits across the globe. This is more than just another news app; it’s the way news comes together.]

And some more banner ads:

The final ad looked like this:

Body copy reads: [When it comes to immersing yourself in a news story, look no further than the source you trust: The Washington Post. Whether it’s breaking news, party politics or anything in between, our new app for the iPad will take you closer to the story by combining articles from our Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists with videos, photos, selected headlines from other news sources and social media conversations. So you can dive deeper into every angle of every story. This is more than just another news app; it’s the way news comes together.]

These ideas were conceived while working at Pappas Group.
Ian wrote these postcards for VW.

Exterior (1 of 2)

Interior (2 of 2)

These ideas were conceived while working at Pappas Group.
Ian pissed off lawyers at Veer.

This story could be spun into a tale of epic proportions; a firsthand account of how I took a conventional contest and transformed it into an international humanitarian movement to educate and empower impoverished children, but the truth is I just wanted to win a new computer.

Veer, the stock photography, illustration and typography company owned by Corbis, held a contest that summoned contenders to recreate their logo using everyday objects. The grand prize contained, amongst other design-centric swag, a shiny new MacBook Pro. Incidentally, I was stuck with a computer destined for the blue bin and barely enough money to fuel my noodle habit when they announced the contest.

Fearing my artistically-gifted competition, I ditched the crafts table for something different. I called a friend; a tattoo artist. As with most manly deals dealt, we worked out a special arrangement. A six-pack of PBR and a few Parliament Lights later we began filming My First Tattoo.

After shooting wrapped I spent the night editing footage and posted the video online, but I knew it needed something else. It didn’t feel big enough. I decided to pair my entry with a few promises, so I created a blog called Help Spread Creativity and spent the wee hours of the morning writing my vows.

Upon winning I swore to (1) donate a new computer to One Laptop Per Child (OLPC), (2) transfer the grand prize’s stock photography allowance to the OLPC and (3) auction my used computer with the proceeds going to, you guessed it, the OLPC. Essentially, the non-profit would receive at least two new computers, nearly $1400 in marketing materials and a little earned media. In return, I hoped they'd share my message with their 7,000+ Twitter followers.

Twitter was the perch and people were sprinkling my seeds, but the OLPC was the true lynchpin. That’s because, in true democratic fashion, the winner of the contest would be decided by voter consensus. But things got interesting way before that.

The video had been online less than a day before it landed on AdFreak's radar. They quickly penned a tisk-Veer-shouldn’t-be-crowdsourcing-tisk article, which led to the AIGA calling Veer and Veer calling their lawyers.

Full story

I knew I had been buggered when Veer blanketed their mailing list to clarify the contest’s purpose and magnify the fine print. This boded poorly because, as I had learned early in elementary school, rarely did the class clown get the gold star. Too deep to stop now, so by the 36th hour I had written an article for TalentZoo.com entitled “If you want viral, let go” and posted a Behind The Scenes video which clarified my intentions and revealed the use of complicated special effects, which included Sharpies and a squirt bottle.

I had hoped they’d laugh the whole paying-for-legal-counsel thing off. After all, everyone loved the entry; even Veer’s employees were tweeting in my favor. The dust settled and there was no direct communication. By assumption, my entry was still in the running, so I was back to convincing bloggers to spread my gospel.

Sadly, when it came time to vote there were no ballots, nor was my name etched into an aluminum Apple. After checking the list of Veer’s top 100 entries (twice) it was clear my name wasn’t there. They did what any good Chinese government would do. They buried it. The bad press over the semantics of recreate versus redesign is a shame, because the good press could have been tenfold… or at least two.

The happy ending is that I got another story to tell, which isn't bad considering I got a week's worth of entertainment out of six beers and a pack of cigarettes.
Ian wrote a ton of headlines for Cottonelle, but this is one of his favorites.

Grand Central Terminal

These ideas were conceived while working at Laughlin/Constable.

Ian writes, shoots and directs videos.


0:00 – AKQA “Written in the Stars”, New York, Role: Writer/Director of Photography/Director/Camera Operator/Story Editor

0:10 – Publicis “StreetSoccer USA 2013”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator

0:21 – GroupFMG “The Julie Wilcox Method”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator

0:29 – Safari Sundays "The Making of Pepsi Football 2012”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator, Story Editor

0:41 – AKQA “Movember 2014”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator, Story Editor

0:47 – Freshpair, Inc. “Ms. Fit”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator, Title Sequence Editor, Story Editor

1:03 – AKQA “Nike Flatiron”, New York, Role: Director of Photography, Camera Operator

ian.john.young at gmail.

Ian recently left full-time agency life as a Senior Copywriter (title case for effect) to pursue cinematography, because he really enjoys making the things he makes up.

He has experience pitching ideas in every media, writing and shooting scripts, ideating traditional and digital campaigns, creating social media content, overseeing UX-driven website overhauls, and coming up with less-easily defined experiences for brands of all sizes.

In addition to writing in the third person, Ian has produced work for: Amtrak, bobble, Carlsberg, Citi, .CO, Georgetown University, Google Play, Jamaica, Kawasaki, Kimberly-Clark, Nike, Old Style beer, Olympus, Pepsi, PIMCO, Rosetta Stone, Stacy Adams, Verizon, Volkswagen Credit, The Washington Post, and more.

In 2014 he was credited for award-winning work at the Cannes Lions, the One Show, the ADDYs and the FWA for Written In The Stars (WOOT WOOT).

When not freelancing for people who give a shit about the work, he writes and shoots all kinds of videos for all kinds of reasons.

If that sounds like what you want, Ian's availability is always current on WorkingNotWorking. Otherwise write him at ian.john.young at gmail.

And thank you; for being interested enough to read all the way to the bottom.